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Divorce and Sale of Home

Are you separated, going through a divorce and need to sell your Home?

Now that the relationship is over…. how much will you get from the sale of the house?
Under Canada’s Constitution, each province and territory is responsible for laws regarding the division and/or equalization of family or marital property. Below is a general overview of most provincial statutes regarding the division of property during divorce.

Divorce in Canada: General Overview on Property Division
In the eyes of the law a marriage is an equal partnership. So, whether a spouse is responsible for running the household or earning family income, their contribution to the relationship is equally important. When a marriage ends, the partnership is over and property has to be divided. The general rule for this division is:
“The value of any property that you acquired during your marriage and that you still have when you separate, must be divided equally between spouses. Property that was brought into your marriage is yours to keep, but any increases in the value of this property during the duration of marriage must be shared.”
This theory is applied to most family assets with the exception of some, and one of the most important exceptions being your matrimonial home.
Matrimonial home
 Section 18 (1) of the Ontario Family Law Act, 1990, defines matrimonial home as “every property in which a person has an interest and that is or, if the spouses have separated, was at the time of separation ordinarily occupied by the person and his or her spouse as their family residence is their matrimonial home.” One or both spouses may designate property owned by one or both of them as a matrimonial home (s. 20 (1)). If one spouse owns the matrimonial home, designated as such, that spouse cannot sell the home without the written consent of the other, non-owning spouse. This is referred to as spousal consent.
If you are selling your matrimonial home, regardless of who holds title, you would need the consent of the non-owning spouse. If it is a non-owning spouse, that spouse would sign under “Spousal Consent” in the Purchase and Sale agreement when selling the house.  Some exceptions apply. e.g. one spouse has released all rights to the matrimonial home.
To get more specific information on laws for your specific area you can visit your provincial government website, or retain a family lawyer.
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Resources:   Propertydivisiondivorcesaleofhome


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